5 Non-negotiable Attributes of Visionary Leadership

It will suffice to say that leaders help themselves and others to do the right things. They set direction, build an inspiring vision, and create something new.

Leadership is about mapping out where you need to go to "win" as a team or an organization; and it is dynamic, exciting, and inspiring.

Yet, while leaders set the direction, they must also use management skills to guide their people to the right destination, in a smooth and efficient way.

I will focus on some qualities of a leader. In particular, I will discuss the "visionary leadership "attributes. These attributes highlight visionary thinking and bringing about change, instead of management processes that are designed to maintain and steadily improve performance.

I am not a bookmaker, but trust me these five essential attributes amidst others will tilt the odds in your favour as you set out on your journey to becoming a visionary leader.


Self-discovery is essential to personal growth, leadership, interpersonal relations, and situational awareness. Nothing can be both so rewarding and at the same time so painful to pride, as the process of self-discovery.

However, without it we are unable to know ourselves, which means that we are more likely to live by the thoughts of self-deceptions, and lies about ourselves.

It is highly expedient to know who you are if you must lead. A man who has not discovered himself is like a blind man who sees through the help of other people. The world today is full of darkness and lots of blind men. It takes men who have discovered themselves to lead the way.


A visionary leader's actions speak volumes and affects other people. To this end, a
to ensure that the actions that are exhibited affect people positively.

I want to describe a visionary leader with this analogy. Let us imagine a visionary leader to be a computer. Character is the central processing unit, Charisma is the output, and Self-Discipline is the input.

What your character shows on the outside as charisma is a result of the level of discipline used to fine-tune the output. If you are not disciplined, you will exhibit a bad character.


Vision is a mental picture of the future. You are not there yet, but you have an idea of what it looks like. You don't need to wait for it to happen before you know that it can happen. Visionary leaders see tomorrow from today.

"In order to take the organization to the highest possible level, leaders must engage their people with a compelling and tangible vision," says Warren Bennis, professor of business administration at the University of Southern California's Marshall School of Business.

To be a visionary leader, you need have nothing more than a clear vision of the future. The difficult task is communicating that vision with clarity and passion in order to motivate and inspire people to take action.

A visionary leader who clearly and passionately communicates his or her vision can motivate employees to act with passion and purpose, thereby ensuring that everyone is working toward a common goal. The result is that everyone contributes to the organization's forward momentum.

The amount of success you record in leadership is determined by how big your vision is. If you can see far, you can go far. The big question is, where do you see yourself and your team tomorrow?


A primary task of leadership is to direct attention. To do so, leaders must learn to focus their own attention. When we speak about being focused, we commonly mean thinking about one thing while filtering out distractions.

It is normal to have many things demanding your attention as a leader. These things could be personal, family or societal. Your ability to place your priorities right will help you focus on what you need to achieve as a visionary leader.

Some leaders have failed because they think they can handle everything around them. Those leaders are the ones we refer to as "jack of all trades; master of none".

Successful leaders know what to do and when to do them. Do not think that being a leader means you should do everything. Learn to prioritize things. With good focus, you will succeed as a visionary leader. Be wise and FOCUS!


This has to do with zeal and passion, and I will be using the three words interchangeably. You have to be passionate in what you do and convey same to the people you are leading. Your
is what creates the positive atmosphere and energy for great achievements in leadership. If you are not enthusiastic as a leader, you will lack motivation, for yourself and the people.

Enthusiasm drives you to attain great heights in leadership. Passion to leadership is a vital determinant of how far you go in life. That is what gives you reason to forge ahead even in the midst of great discouragements.

I must also warn that if enthusiasm is not properly directed, a leader can end up being misguided. The tendency of veering off course is there, and you need to watch out for that. Guide your enthusiasm with wisdom and you will make a very successful leader.